It is really easy to come across bad advice, which is why I have devoted two posts to listing some of the worst marketing strategy advice that is out there. If you haven’t read Part 1 of this post, not to worry, reading about your marketing strategy backwards is ok. When you try to create your strategy from the wrong starting point is when you will create problems! Have a look at last week’s Spotlight, Part 1.
After going through 7 pieces of bad advice from last week, here are numbers 8 – 14.
#8: You need to be on all social media channels
Not only will this put a drain on both your time and financial resources, it can also have a negative effect on your online community development. The key is to select social channels that are relevant to your organization, your brand, and most importantly, your customers. It can be as simple as researching your competitors or setting up a focus group with people from your target audience to find out where your efforts will be most successful.
#9: You really don’t need social media
Opposite to the previous piece of bad advice, some people don’t think social media is important at all. They think their customers aren’t on there so neither should they. Reality check. It’s 2014. The internet is a real thing. Social media is here to stay. I can guarantee you that all of your customers are affected by social media in some way shape or form either directly or indirectly. How you choose to use it will determine its efficacy.
#10: The more hashtags you use the greater your social media visibility will be
By now, we have all seen the “#Hashtag” sketch with Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake. More hashtags do not equal better results. It is actually kind of annoying. What is more effective is researching hashtag discussions and joining in. You should also consider creating your own hashtag so you can follow when people discuss you on social media. Remember, though – YOU NEVER OWN A HASHTAG and there is a possibility it can backfire a la McDonalds and NYPD.
#11: Social media automation is key to engagement
How many times have you followed someone on Twitter only to have what is so obviously a pre-set message sent back to you telling you to check out their website. Sure it takes a bit of extra time, but get to know who is interacting with you and make it personal, create a connection! Where posting is concerned, beware of the auto-post trap. You stand the risk of alienating your community because it is less personal and you could unknowingly walk into a PR nightmare.
#12: Don’t ask for likes, retweets, or clicks because it makes you look desperate
On the contrary, every time you put content out there, if you can include a call to action to your audience, then they will more likely do it! It gives them a reason to interact with you. Just remember, moderation is important. Otherwise people will start to ignore your message.
#13: If you target everyone then you will have a better chance of reaching higher revenues
This is a tough one because in theory, sure it could work. However, you will spend a higher amount of money on reaching everyone through a variety of channels and tactics. And why do you want to be known as having mediocre marketing messaging that doesn’t really relate to anyone in particular? You need to decide what you bring to the table and who needs it. By defining your target audience(s), you can create highly targeted messaging and spend less resources (time and money) on perfecting specific marketing channels. Give your audience what they need and they will be interested!
#14: If it doesn’t work right away, you are doing something wrong
This is my biggest pet peeve. Just because you don’t start seeing results overnight doesn’t mean that your strategy isn’t working. Have a look at all of the different components to your marketing strategy and realize that what you are doing is building awareness and loyalty among your audiences. They need to trust you and get to know you. The key is monitoring and defining specific metrics to determine the effectiveness of each tactic and seeing how it fits into the bigger picture.